We're converting a 300 square foot area of turf into a woodland garden, mainly because this area doesn't get enough sun to support grass and because it is at the edge of our heavily wooded backyard where we have our bird feeders and lots of wildlife. I have decided it is futile to keep laying down pre-emergents and fertilizers when none of it seems to help and can be harming our creature friends.
So my question is, what kind of mulch to apply here that will not, at this point, have any plants but only some large native rocks placed randomly throughout the mulch?
I like pine straw because it is lightweight and easy to find and work with but I know it is sticky and will clog with fall leaves and be a real mess. The other types of mulch settle and mat better so I could blow the leaves off into the woods in fall, but which is best? Pine bark? Hardwood bark? I am reading a lot about cypress and the environmental reasons to avoid it, so that is not an option.\
Any ideas on which commercially available mulch would be best used here? I appreciate your feedback!